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Storylines, Winds Intensify in Jonesboro

By Baker Helton
Missy Gannon putts at Jonesboro
Missy Gannon negotiates a challenging stance during round 2 at the Jonesboro Open. Gannon will be on the lead card for Sunday’s final round.

The winds of day one at the DGPT – Play It Again Sports Jonesboro Open powered by Prodigy were, in a word, blustery.

They blew with bad intentions beginning early on day two.

Despite sunshine and temperatures in the 70s, players and spectators alike felt an occasional chill in the air thanks to 30-plus m.p.h. wind gusts first experienced as a direct headwind on hole one. It looked like scoring well might be nearly impossible.

Kristin Tattar didn’t get the memo.

FPO: Tattar Extends Her Lead

For the second day in a row the hot round – again, by several strokes – belonged to Tattar.

Six under par for round two, and unflappable in the wind, Tattar didn’t miss a fairway on the day and her firm putting style cut through the wind for seven birdies and nearly as many crucial par saves.

“I did lay up a couple of times because I didn’t want to take the risk,” said Tattar, “but if I was inside the circle I was going for it.”

Tattar has a seven shot lead going into the final round.

Full Coverage of the 2022 Jonesboro Open»

Missy Gannon, whose game isn’t built around raw distance, relied on smart, timely shotmaking en route to a 4-under round, to stay on the lead card for day three. She is nine under par for the event.

Also at 9-under, Kat Mertsch’s two under par round was enough to keep her in contention.

Ella Hansen will ensure the same lead foursome plays together for another day. Hansen’s two day score of eight under par was just enough to edge out a host of chasers including Stacie Rawnsley (-7) and Catrina Allen (-5).

MPO: Simon Shines, McBeth Surges, Calvin Sets the Pace

The story of Saturday in Jonesboro belonged to Simon Lizotte, whose scorching 13-under-par effort not only bested his own day one score by 12 strokes, it also vaulted him 67 places up the leaderboard.

“Yesterday I shot a one-down and today I didn’t throw much better,” said Lizotte. “This game is so weird how you can play the same golf and shoot 10, 12 strokes different.”

Lizotte is now in contention and will play round three on the chase card with a trio of other golfers also at 14-under – Knut Valen Håland, Emerson Keith, and Joel Freeman.

Despite an unfortunate triple bogey on the last hole, upstart Alden Harris – who started the round with the lead – retains a place on the lead card for round three. Harris is 15 under par.

Kevin Jones, tied in third position with Harris is also 15-under for the tournament thanks to a clean, bogey-free-but-quiet 6-under round.

Paul McBeth mashed the throttle to the floor beginning on hole nine, shooting seven under par for the next seven holes. Despite a frustrating bogey at the last, McBeth moved up to the second position with a 16 under-par total score.

“I’m tired of just playing good,” said McBeth. “This is where I need to turn things around.”

pmatjonesboro.jpgPaul McBeth shot up the leaderboard during round 2 at the Jonesboro Open. He trails leader Calvin Heimburg by one going into the final round.

McBeth says that while he isn’t throwing shots with all his power, his injured throwing arm continues to feel good after two rounds on this long Disc Side of Heaven layout.

These three – Harris, Jones and McBeth – plus another 10 players within five strokes of the lead, will pursue Calvin Heimburg. Although trending upward – he followed an eight under par first round with a 9-under second round – Heimburg believes he has not put together an elite round yet.

“It’s going to take a double-digit (under par) round tomorrow in order to win,” said Heimburg, “so I definitely need to clean it up.”

A moderate chance of rain is in the forecast for most of Sunday in northeast Arkansas. When or if the rain comes, and whether thunderstorms might cause delays is on the players minds as they prepare for a final loop around the Disc Side of Heaven.

Live coverage of the final round of the Jonesboro Open begins at 9:15 a.m. CT for FPO, and 3:30 p.m. CT for MPO on the Disc Golf Network.

Article written by Grant Zellner #61914